Traditions of the University of Santo Tomas
The University of Santo Tomas in Manila, Philippines marks a variety of traditions. Many are annual events, such as religious assemblies marking the start and end of the academic year, a "welcome walk" for the benefit of new students, as well as sporting and dance events. Christmas is marked by the UST Christmas Concert, and many Roman Catholic feast days are also celebrated. Individual colleges also stage their own events, and there is an intercollege "ideal personality" competition. Fireworks displays are mounted frequently. There is a university song, a mascot - the Growling Tiger, and a symbol - the Sun. Another tradition is the use of the Spanish and Latin languages.
- 1 Opening exercises
- 2 School spirit and sport traditions
- 3 Colleges
- 4 Christmas celebrations
- 5 Feasts
- 6 Fireworks
- 7 University-wide events
- 8 Closing of the school year
- 9 The Thomasian
- 10 Legends
- 11 Symbolism
- 12 Sporadic events
- 13 References
- 14 External links
Misa de Apertura
Being the Catholic University of the Philippines, UST opens each school year with the Mass of the Holy Spirit. Also called as Misa de Apertura, it is officiated by a Dominican father or a guest clergy at the Santisimo Rosario Parish. The opening is formally declared by the Apostolic Nuncio or his delegate, in consonance with the status of UST as a pontifical university.
In 2012, Apostolic Nuncio to the Philippines, Archbishop Giuseppe Pinto, led the Misa de Apertura and the opening rites of the school year.
Discurso de Apertura
Discurso de apertura consists of a printed extensive scientific paper read by its author at the formal opening of the school year. The professor or dean assigned the preparation of this academic paper is appointed by the rector of the university a few months prior to the opening of each school year.
The Discurso started on July 16, 1866 as an annual event. It was temporarily discontinued in 1929 when Don Nicanor Cortez failed to write his dissertation. Twelve years after, the tradition was brought back with Fr. Angel de Blas, O.P., a psychologist, as the speaker. It was again discontinued in 1942 at the break out of World War II, and resumed later on in 1946.
Replacing the usual Discurso Apertura in 2012 was the inaugural address of Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P. as the ninety-sixth rector of the university.
Dean, UST Faculty of Civil Law
|Judicial Bar Council and the importance of refining
the process of appointing court judges
Dean, UST College of Architecture
|Focus on building "humane communities"|||
|2002||Jaime de los Santos,
Assistant Dean, UST College of Fine Arts and Design
Dean, UST Conservatory of Music
|"Music: Raising the Level of Listening Appreciation"|||
Dean, UST Faculty of Medicine and Surgery
|Value of spirituality on students|||
Dean, UST College of Commerce
Dean, UST College of Nursing
|Exodus of Filipino nurses|||
Dean, UST AMV College of Accountancy
|Governance and internal controls in businesses|||
|2008||Rev. Fr. Rolando de la Rosa, O.P.,
Rector, University of Santo Tomas
|2009||John Joseph T. Fernandez,
Dean, UST College of Architecture
|"Heritage Conservation in the University of Santo Tomas"|||
Dean, UST Faculty of Civil Law
|"Constantly Striving for Excellence"|||
|2011||Regalado Trota Jose,
Archivist, Archivo de la Universidad de Santo Tomas
|"Facebook Flashback: The Archives and the Story of the University"|||
|2012||Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P.,
Rector, University of Santo Tomas
|2013||Allan de Guzman
Faculty (now Dean), UST College of Education
|Parable of Talents: The University of Santo Tomas at the Crossroad of History and Creativity|||
Dean, UST Faculty of Engineering
|Convergence: Innovations in Food Engineering and Engineering Education, and the Engineering of our Restless Being|||
Dean, UST College of Rehabilitation Sciences
|2016||Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P.,
Rector, University of Santo Tomas
University of Santo Tomas Hymn (full version)
The Thomasian Welcome Walk
The Thomasian Welcome Walk (TWW) is an annual university tradition that seeks to instill a sense of pride and belonging among the youngest members of the Thomasian Family. It symbolizes the linkage between incoming freshmen and their predecessors in the university. The first Walk took place in June 14, 2002, known before as "The Rites of Passage".
Freshmen from the 21 faculties and colleges of the university, including the high school, pass under historic Arch of the Centuries and walk towards the UST Main Building. Shortly after the symbolic passing is the Eucharistic Celebration—the highlight of the event. A welcome party featuring live bands and other university organizations comes after the mass.
In 2012, like the previous years, the Walk was postponed several times because of bad weather. Originally scheduled on June 28, it was held on September 24 at the UST Quadricentennial Pavilion. The Walk, for the first time, was divided into two batches as the venue could not accommodate all freshmen students. The first batch was held in the morning and it was participated by students from the Arts and Letters, Engineering, Commerce and Business Administration, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Science, Music, and Education High School. The Walk for the second batch took place immediately after.
School spirit and sport traditions
The UST Hymn is the alma mater of the University of Santo Tomas. The lyrics were written by Dr. Jose Ma. Hernandez to music composed by the UST Conservatory of Music's first director, Dean Julio Esteban Anguita, and orchestrated by Manuel P. Maramba, O.S.B. Today, only the chorus of the original hymn is being sung and being played.
Colors and mascots
UST's official mascot is the Growling Tiger. Another mascot, Quster, which stands for Quadricentennial UST Tiger, was specially made for the 400th anniversary of the university. In The Varsitarian, UST students are represented by Tomas U. Santos.
Thomasian Goodwill Games
The Thomasian Goodwill Games is a program of the UST Institute of Physical Education and Athletics (IPEA) that seeks to promote the spirit of friendship and unity between students of the different colleges of the university. Sporting events include basketball, volleyball, football, judo, swimming, beach volleyball, and table tennis. It was formally established in school year 2002–2003 by UST judo coach Alberto Arce.
Colleges also have different sporting teams other than the ones mentioned above. Some include tennis and badminton in their college's sport fests.
|Swimming||Table Tennis||Beach Volleyball|
|2002–2003||-||-||-||-||-||CFAD vs. AB||Arch||-||-||-|
|2004–2005||CBA vs. Eng'g||Educ vs. FMS||-||-||-||-||CBA||-||-||-|
|2007–2008||AB vs. Eng'g||Nurs||-||-||Arch vs. CFAD||-||-||Nurs||-||-|
|2008–2009||-||CBA||CFAD vs. Eng'g||AMV vs. CBA||CRS vs. GS-CL||-||CBA||-||-||-||-|
|2009–2010||-||CBA||CBA||Eng'g||Arch vs. Eng'g||FMS vs. Nurs||-||CBA||Eccle||Pha||-|
|2010–2011||Eng'g||Educ||CBA||AMV||Arch vs. GS-CL||FMS vs. Nurs||not held||not held||not held||not held||not held|
|2011–2012||CTHM vs. Eng'g||CBA||AMV vs. CBA||AMV vs. Arch||Eccle vs. GS-CL||FMS vs. Nurs||-||-||-||-||-|
|2012–2013||AB vs. Eng'g||AB vs. CBA||AB vs. CBA||Arch vs. CBA||Eng'g vs. FMS||FMS||-||-||-||-||-|
|2013–2014||CBA vs. CTHM||CBA||AMV vs. Arch||Eng'g vs. Pha||-||CRS vs. FMS||-||-||-||-||-|
|2014–2015||CBA vs. CTHM||CBA vs. CRS||AMV vs. Arch||AB vs. Educ||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|2015-2016||Eng'g vs. Sci||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
- Champion team in boldface.
- AB: Arts and Letters; AMV: Accountancy; Arch: Architecture; CBA: Commerce and Business Administration; CFAD: Fine Arts and Design; CRS: Rehabilitation Sciences; CTHM: Tourism and Hospitality Management; Eccle: Ecclesiastical Studies; Educ: Education; Eng'g: Engineering; FMS: Medicine and Surgery; GS: Graduate School; GS–CL: Graduate School–Civil Law; Law: Civil Law; Nurs: Nursing; Pha: Pharmacy; Sci: Science; UST-HS: UST High School
Cheermaniais an annual cheerdance competition organized by the UST Student Organizations Coordinating Council (UST SOCC).
|Year||Champion||Second Place||Third Place|
Salinggawi Dance Troupe
Every year, the UST Salinggawi Dance Troupe, the official dance group of the university holds dance competitions in August and dance concerts in March.
Part of the University's mission is to holistically develop students to be competent, compassionate professionals, and committed servants of the Church. Through regular recollections, Thomasians are given a different kind of time-out from their classrooms to help them find their spiritual self and God's presence in their souls. Half-day recollections are usually held in the UST Medicine Auditorium while one- to three-day-long retreats are usually held in the Dominican Retreat House—Caleruega, Philippines in Nasugbu, Batangas.
- Medicine and Surgery — in September
Valedictorians and salutatorians
|2006||Arts and Letters
|2011||Tourism and Hospitality Management
Hotel and Restaurant Management
|1.069||Tourism and Hospitality Management||1.119|
|2014||Tourism and Hospitality Management
The Christmas Concert
The UST Christmas Concert features talents from the UST Conservatory of Music, UST Singers, Coro Tomasino, Liturgikon, Conservatory Chorus Class, and the UST Symphony Orchestra. Traditional Filipino and foreign Christmas classics are performed in the event. At the end of every concert, the UST Symphony Orchestra and performers lead the audience in singing some songs such as 'Ang Pasko ay Sumapit.'
The Christmas Concert Gala began in 2003 when the UST secretary-general Fr. Isidro Abaño, O.P., envisioned a musical concert that would bring together world-class Thomasian talents who would perform for UST students, faculty, alumni, friends, and benefactors. Initially, the concert helped raise funds for the various projects of the university, such as scholarship grants of the students of the UST Conservatory of Music, but since 2008, it has also contributed in UST's heritage-conservation efforts. Maricris Zobel, socialite and an art patroness, has been the co-chair of the organizing committee since then. Proceeds of the Christmas Gala has been allotted for the victims of typhoons Ondoy and Pepeng in 2009, restoration of various paintings, and construction of the UST Museum of Arts and Sciences Hall of Visual Arts in 2011.
Various organizations like the Belo Medical Group, the San Miguel Corporation, the Enrique Zobel group of companies, and the Singapore Airlines have become presenters of the event. In 2010, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs hosted the opening of the concert and the Lumina Pandit, an exhibit for the quadricentennial festivities.
At the ninth Christmas Concert Gala in December 1, 2011, the newly installed Martyr's Carillon at the façade of the Santisimo Rosario Parish was rang by the Professor Raul Sinico, Dean of the UST Conservatory of Music.
Primered by the Eucharistic Celebration, the Paskuhan is the Thomasian way of celebrating Christmas. It is one of the most awaited events of the year showcasing different performances from different student organizations, and live bands, which is complemented with an extravagant show of pyrotechny.
In the 2011 celebration, the crowd was estimated at 100,000.
- Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas, Patron Saint of the University – in January 28
- Feast of St. Dominic de Guzman - August 8
- Feast of St. Catherine of Alexandria - November 25
- Feast of the Immaculate Conception - December 8
UST began having pyromusical shows in the opening of the Quadricentennial Celebration in January 27, 2011. It was also the first time the Philippines saw a multi-position pyromusical event when the fireworks were launched from the UST Grandstand and Santisimo Rosario Parish. In the Neo-Centennial Celebration in January this year, the University was also the first to set up a pyromusical in four different structures and buildings. The music and choreography of all the pyromusical events are arranged by Don Miguel Villarosa and the technicals and set-up are done by John Oliver Zeng, alumni of the UST College of Fine Arts and Design, class of 2009. The fireworks off all the pyromusical events are provided by Dragon Fireworks, a local fireworks manufacturer.
|Date||Event||Location and music||Ref.|
||Quattromondial Monument unveiling||
|Q Grand Program||
||One@400: Q Grand Alumni Homecoming Dinner||
||Baccalaureate Mass 2011||
Theme: Party Rock
Theme/Show title: Chariots of Fire
||Baccalaureate Mass 2012||
||Baccalaureate Mass 2013||
||Baccalaureate Mass 2014||
Theme/Show title: The Rise of the Snow Queen
||Baccalaureate Mass 2015||
|Theme/Show title: Rock Ages
||Baccalaureate Mass 2016||
||UAAP Season 79 Opening Ceremonies||
||Baccalaureate Mass 2017||
||UAAP Season 79 Closing Ceremonies||
- Pautakan – A quiz bee among different colleges and faculties. Established in 1977
- The USTv Students' Choice Awards on Television – Established in 2005
- The Search for the Ideal Thomasian Personality – The annual intercollegiate search highlights the values in the Thomasian identity of compassion, competence, and commitment organized by the UST Student Organizations Coordinating Council (UST SOCC).
|Academic year||Winner||First runner-up||Second runner-up|
- AB: Arts and Letters; AMV: Accountancy; Arch: Architecture; CBA: Commerce and Business Administration; CFAD: Fine Arts and Design; CRS: Rehabilitation Sciences; CTHM: Tourism and Hospitality Management; Educ: Education; Eng'g: Engineering; FMS: Medicine and Surgery; Law: Civil Law; Nurs: Nursing; Pha: Pharmacy; Sci: Science; UST-HS: UST High School
- Himig Tomasino – Annual competition of the different collegiate chorale groups of the university organized by the UST Student Organizations Coordinating Council (UST SOCC).
- The Sinai Youth Camp – It is an annual university event/retreat that commemorates the Sinai Covenant. Selected second year students from the different colleges enrolled in the subject of Theology 2 - Church and Sacraments participate the event. The event is sponsored by the UST Institute of Religion.
Closing of the school year
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Arch of the Centuries
It has been a superstition that crossing the Arch while still studying in the university would result in a delay of graduation and if you re-enter the Arch of the Centuries it will result that you will never be able to graduate in this university
Height of the Main Building
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The Sun is the symbol of Saint Thomas Aquinas. A symbol of his teachings which, themselves illumined by divine truth, bear forth great light for the whole Church. Moreover, since true knowledge of God leads to the love of God and, since charity is properly depicted with fire and heat; the sunburst symbolizes the fire of charity which unites the believer to the Savior – filled with charity himself, St. Thomas has instilled the ardor of love in the hearts of countless faithful.
University in Spanish
- The University on its third centennial: El Tricentenario
- Previous names of the faculties and colleges: Facultad de Teología, Facultad de Cánones, Facultad de Derecho Civil, Facultades de Medicina y Farmacia, Facultad de Filosofía y Letras, Facultad de Ingeniería, and Colegio de Bellas Artes
University in Latin
- Latin name: Pontificia et Regalis Sancti Thomæ Aquinatis Universitas Manilana (Pontifical and Royal University of Santo Tomas, Manila)
- Motto: Veritas in Caritate (Truth in Charity)
- Main Building: Tria Haec ("This Three") statues at the Main Building (Faith, Hope and Charity; Three Virtues of St. Paul)
- In the Miguel de Benavides Library cornice: "Has tenebrae cingunt mentis caligine terras Hoc Sancti Thomae Universitates Opus: Lumina Pandit" ("Darkness covers this land in a mental mist. This is the task of the University of Santo Tomas: to spread the light.")
- In the QuattroMondial monument: Pontificia et Regalis Universitas Sancti Thomae Aquantis Manilana MDCXI. Contemplari et Contemplata aliis Tradere. In Veritate fideles. In Labore proficientes. In Caritate divites ("To contemplate and to hand on to others the fruits of contemplation. In truth, faithful. In an effort to make progress. Rich in Love."
- In San Martin de Porres Building facade: Facultas Medicinae et Chirurgiae, Honora medicum. Opera eius sunt necessaria. Deus autem est qui vitae et mortis. Habet potestatem. Ars longa, vita brevis, occasio fugit, experimentum periculosum, iudicum difficle. (Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, honoring medicine. His works are necessary, God who has power over life and death.)
- In the Central Seminary Building: Facultates Ecclesiasticae
- Latin honors cum laude, magna cum laude, summa cum laude, meritus, bene meritus, and meritissimus
Installation of a new rector
Last June 4, 2012, The Rev. Herminio Dagohoy, O.P., Ph.D. became the 96th Rector Magnificus of the University. He was appointed as the 96th rector of UST by Zenon Cardinal Grocholewski at the Santissimo del Rosario Parish with a style of "His Magnificence". He was nominated by Members of the Order of Preachers of the University, the Academic Senate, and the Board of Trustees of the University
UST at 500
At the end of the pyromusical display of the Neo-centennial Celebration in January 2012, "UST 500" was spelled out using indoor fireworks atop the Main Building.
The Varsitarian Neo-centennial magazine supplement released in June 2012 was entitled "Toward 500".
- Lim-Pe, Josefina (1973). The University of Santo Tomas in the Twentieth Century. University of Santo Tomas Press, Manila. pp. 198–202.
- Dagohoy installed as UST's 96th Rector The Varsitarian. Breaking News • June 4, 2012.
- de Ramos, Norberto V. (2000). I Walked with Twelve UST Rectors. Alfredo G. Ablaza and Christina De Ramos Ablaza. p. 4.
- Discurso de Apertura: Balik-tanaw The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXXIII, No. 14 • June 10, 2012.
- The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXII, No. 1 • June 22, 2000.
- UST Rector makes pitch for values The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIII, No. 1 • July 11, 2001.
- 'Strive for excellence,' Nuncio urges faculty The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIV, No. 1 • June 20, 2002.
- Rector appeals to Thomasians: 'Be advocates of hope' The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXV, No. 1 • June 30, 2003.
- Rector calls slow canvas a 'national embarrassment' The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVI, No. 1 • June 25, 2004.
- Rector to faculty: Motivate students The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVII, No. 1 • June 25, 2005.
- Nursing dean to gov't: Make our nurses stay The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVIII, No. 1 • June 23, 2006.
- Enrollment soars anew The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIX, No. 1 • June 30, 2007.
- Fight "institutional crisis" De la Rosa urges, The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXX, No. 1 • June 30, 2008.
- Full Text of Dean's Discurso de Apertura, Architecture Faculty Club. November 7, 2011.
- Discurso de Apertura (UST 2010-2011) ustcivillaw.com. Accessed November 9, 2011
- Going Out - UST's School Opening Mass honors 400-year-old tradition, Business World Weekender. November 7, 2011.
- "blessing"_says_cebu_archbishop_in_opening_mass UST education a "blessing," says Cebu archbishop in Opening Mass, The Varsitarian, Breaking News. Accessed June 3, 2013
- Thomasians urged to live a life of prayer in Opening Mass, The Varsitarian, Breaking News. Accessed July 7, 2014
- Early preparation, by Elinando B. Cinco Manila Bulletin. June 27, 2011.
- Freshmen to be 'initiated' The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIII, No. 11 • June 6, 2002.
- Thomasian Welcome Walk 2008. Accessed July 4, 2008.
- Campus Beat - British Council launches Changemaker tilt, Manila Bulletin. July 4, 2011.
- UST Holds Yearly Thomasian Welcome Walk For Freshmen UST.edu.ph Accessed December 19, 2011
- Freshman hold welcome walk finally The Varsitarian. Breaking News • September 24, 2012.
- Ika-350 taong anibersaryo ng UST The Varsitarian. March 6, 2012.
- UST Hymn, 40K Voices for UST's 400 program. November 7, 2011.
- Goodwill games simula na The Varsitarian. August 8. 2010.
- Archi tops judo intrams The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIV, No. 10 • February 20, 2003.
- Special Reports - Gathering the troops The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVI, No. 2 • July 16, 2004
- Commerce cagers sweep Intrams The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVI, No. 10 • February 24, 2005
- Commerce extends Judo reign The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXVII, No. 6 • October 28, 2005
- Artlets cruise to Thomasian Goodwill cage plum The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXIX, No. 8 • February 29, 2008
- Commerce men's volley scores three-peat in Goodwill Games The Varsitarian. September 9, 2011
- Thomasian Table Tennis Goodwill Games 2010: A Success tomasinoweb.org Accessed December 20, 2011
- AB, Commerce rule Goodwill basketball The Varsitarian. Vol. LXXXIV, No. 8 • December 7, 2012
- Lifestyle - Ringing of Martyrs’ Carillon to open 2012 UST Christmas Concert Gala by Dexter R. Matilla, Philippine Daily Inquirer. November 28, 2011.
- The Christmas Gala Story ustchristmasconcert.com. Accessed November 29, 2011
- Concert gala ushers in holidays in UST by Francis T. Wakefield, Manila Bulletin. December 16, 2009.
- Breaking News - UST Museum opens Visual Arts Gallery The Varsitarian. November 20. 2011, 11:17 a.m.
- Lifestyle - UST Christmas Concert dazzles and elevates by Pablo A. Tariman, Philippine Daily Inquirer. December 4, 2011.
- Public Information Service Unit - DFA Hosts UST Exhibit and Christmas Concert DFA.gov.ph. Accessed November 29, 2011
- Campus Beat - Carillon bells open UST Christmas Concert Gala, Manila Bulletin. November 24, 2011.
- Breaking News - Paskuhan looks forward to UST's fifth century The Varsitarian. December 17, 2011.
- News and Events dragongfireworks.com Accessed January 30, 2012
- Lifestyle - People - Reverence and revelry at UST’s Neo-Centennial GMAnetwork.com. Accessed January 31, 2012
- UST Paskuhan draws crowd of 70,000 The Varsitarian. Accessed December 28, 2012.
- LOOK: UST’s Paskuhan 2016: Honoring Xmas with a meaningful homily and lots of festive fun site, News5, retrieved December 28, 2016
- UST Prepares for Sinai Youth Camp Congress 2008 UST.edu.ph Accessed March 17, 2012
- Toward 500, The Varsitarian. June 2012.